Children's Film Festival Seattle

Children's Film Festival Seattle

For full festival details, look no further than the official Children's Film Festival Seattle 2017 website!

Have you ever dreamed of going on an around-the-world trip with your family? Then save the dates for Children’s Film Festival Seattle 2017, January 26 - February 11, at Northwest Film Forum.

​Our next edition of Children’s Film Festival Seattle will feature more than 188 films from 50+ countries. Kids can hear the music of dozens of different languages in the festival, and feast their eyes on gorgeous animation, crisp live action and features films that run the gamut from laugh-out-loud funny to unforgettably poignant.

Now more than ever, it’s a great time to remind our kids that Planet Earth is home to many different and beautiful cultures and ways of life. Our festival films also show that we share much in common with people who live in vastly different circumstances than we do. We all have the same longings — to laugh, to love, to belong and find the deeper meaning of our lives. An international children’s film festival is a perfect place to discover common ground, to build empathy and celebrate our shared humanity.

​Our festival offers something for everyone ages 2-14, from gentle animation for our youngest viewers to meaty docs and narrative films about important issues for older kids. School groups are joyously welcome — please let us know at cffs@nwfilmforum.org if you are an educator interested in bringing a field trip group to the festival.

​As always, kids will be in charge at this year’s festival. We’ve reached a wonderful milestone with this, our 12th Children’s Film Festival Seattle — our youth jury will be led by a group of amazing teenaged graduates of the jury program, which began in 2007. We can’t wait to see the smiles on our new young juror’s faces when they meet their leaders — motivated, high-energy, worldly teens who have grown up watching international films at Northwest Film Forum. To find out more about the children's jury, contact liz@nwfilmforum.org.

​Our festival motto is simple: See the World, Feed Your Mind. From the beginning, we’ve believed that kids can only change the world if they’ve seen the world. We hope this festival opens their eyes.

 

 

Longing and Belonging: Films from PLURAL+

Jan 26

PLURAL+ is a youth-produced video festival that encourages young people to make films about migration, diversity and social inclusion, and to share their creative vision with the world. The films here, all made by filmmakers 25 years and younger, are the most recent prizewinners at the 2016 PLURAL+ festival.

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Creature Teachers

Jan 28 - Feb 01

What can we learn from the animals we love? Jump into these short animated films and find yourself transformed into deer, crocodiles, and herons, oh my! Harmonize with pigs, dance with wolves, bake with octopi and watch TV with a crocodile. Along the way, you’ll learn how to be a true friend and embrace your adventures!

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Destination

Jan 28 - Feb 11

Join kids in eight different countries as they play with their friends, go to school, make clever schemes, and explore. This program of live action shorts from around the world features funny, shy, and creative kids just like you.

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Pure Imagination

Jan 28 - Feb 05

Ever wondered how a forest full of talking trees and fish would look? What if tiny musical bands filled our lives with marvelous melodies? Put on your favorite imagination cap, and join in on this journey through magical worlds filled with love and adventure.

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True to Yourself

Jan 28 - Feb 01

This extraordinary collection of live action films focuses on integrity and doing the right thing. What does it mean to be true to yourself? How do you put that ideal into practice in everyday life? Meet a father and son who find a lost wallet, a gender non-conforming teen facing their traditional Muslim family, a girl who thinks out loud about self-expression, and a boy whose soccer coach asks him to lie. These finely-scripted films will leave you with fodder for a great conversation on the trip home.

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Nelly's Adventure

Seattle premiere!

Director in attendance!

Presented with Portland German Film Festival/ Zeitgeist Northwest

Jan 28

(Dominik Wessely, Germany, live action, 2016, 97 min, in German and Romanian with English subtitles)

Thirteen-year-old Nelly’s holiday in Romania takes a very dramatic turn when she accidentally discovers her family’s secret plan to relocate there.

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Friends Are Forever

Jan 28 - Feb 01

Is there anything better than having a friend by your side? Good friends add color, music and memories to our lives. In this collection of mostly animated shorts, friends also come in all shapes and sizes, from a fierce little lion with a surprisingly soft heart, to a small, shy girl gaining strength from her grandmother and teacher.

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My Parrot Mom

West coast premiere!

Jan 28

(Martin Musarra, Argentina, live action, 2016, 80 min, in Spanish with English subtitles)

Juana, an eleven-year-old girl, is part of a very special family whose members have the incredible ability to turn themselves into animals. Set on the coast of Argentina and imbued with magical Latin-American realism, this movie invites us to reflect on who we are.

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Family Time

Jan 28 - Feb 04

Families make the world go ‘round! In these animated and live action shorts, we learn that very different kinds of families can share the same bond of love. Find the sun, learn a new song, dance with cats, drink from a tall, cool glass of color, and rediscover what your own family means to you.

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No Bullies Allowed

Jan 28 - Feb 04

These kids use their smarts and their compassion to defeat bullying in creative ways. From buzzing robot drones to daisy chains to introspection and friendship, the heroes in this program find opportunities to stand up for themselves and others, and in so doing teach us about how to make the world a kinder and more just place.

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Indigenous Showcase at Children's Film Festival Seattle

Presented with Longhouse Media.

Jan 28 - Feb 04

This wide-ranging program tells the stories of Indigenous people throughout North America, including beautifully animated traditional tales, stirring experimental films by young Native filmmakers, an inspiring documentary about a Yup’ik village that comes together for basketball, and the unique history of Yavapai doctor and activist Carlos Montezuma.

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Shine On

Jan 29 - Feb 11

What makes you shine? The characters in these sweet and funny films have special things that make them glow and grow. Join them as they play with words, make new friends, tend a garden, and dig themselves out of holes and take journeys to near and far. If you close your eyes and make a wish, you might even be able to join them on a trip to the moon!

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Wild Child

Jan 29 - Feb 01

Let your creativity run wild! In this collection of imaginative films, experience a meerkat rescue mission, get captured by your own toy, explore a dangerous universe in a taxi, and befriend a giant, gentle beast. Open your eyes to the wild adventures the world has to offer.

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Jill and Joy's Winter

North American premiere!

Jan 29

(Sami Keski-Vähälä, Finland, live action, 2015, 77 min, in Finnish with English subtitles)

One December evening, a small car, barely the size of a shoebox, pulls up in front of Jill and Joy's house, and a teensy-weensy family gets out. The McTiny family, having just lost their home, move in with Jill and Joy but soon find out that not all big people have good intentions towards them.

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Monsters Are *Reel*

Jan 29

These shorts show kids confronting their fears. The “monsters” in these films can be as ordinary as an iPhone, trying to stay awake in class, your own reflection, or as extraordinary as a malevolent spirit stalking the high-rise residences of Dubai. Get ready for some chills!

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Fortune Favors the Brave

Seattle premiere! Screenwriter Katrin Milhahn in attendance!

Presented with Portland German Film Festival / Zeitgeist Northwest

Jan 29

(Norbert Lechner, Germany, live action, 2016, 97 min, in German and Vietnamese with English subtitles)

Vietnamese sisters Lihn and Tien (ages 11 and 9, respectively) must keep a dangerous secret — their mother has had to return to Vietnam, and the girls are on their own in Germany.

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Story World

Jan 29 - Feb 04

Prepare to be fascinated and inspired. With a mixture of both carefully drawn images and stop-motion critters, these animated films present various ideas about our world as characters explore their own worlds. Watch as these colorful stories unfold in front of you, and open up your eyes and heart to beautiful stories about aspects of love and adventure both light and dark.

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Gotta Be Me

Jan 29 - Feb 01

The characters in these films are learning to dive deeper and fly higher. Meet a girl who shifts her shape, a boy who feels music instead of hears it, someone who longs to spend his life by the sea, and even some animated creatures who are also one-of-a-kind, just like you!

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Save the Earth

Jan 29 - Feb 01

The earth is our only home, so let’s take care of it! In this program, you’ll travel through forests and the cosmos, animated dreamscapes, funny animal adventures, and stories about scientists, just to end up back at home, ready to change our environmental future.

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Fountain of Youth

Jan 29

Let these genius youth filmmakers inspire you! Take an art walk in Capitol Hill, solve a mystery to save orcas in an aquarium, and go on an impossible voyage to the moon in these short films made by young individuals just like you.

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Mussa

Jan 29

(Anat Goren, Israel, live action, 2015, 60 min, in Hebrew, Arabic, English, and Amharic, with English subtitles)

This documentary tells the story of 12-year-old Mussa, an African refugee living in Tel Aviv, who won't speak for reasons that no one understands. Mussa's Israeli classmates are his best friends, but he chooses to communicate with them only through gestures.

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Dreaming of a Better World

Feb 04 - Feb 11

This program of thought-provoking films will make young activists want to go out and change the world. These films feature brave young people who persevere against all odds and clarify the social context for their struggles. You’ll meet a boy who dreams of being the Robin Hood of Senegal, an American girl who protests the racist policies that have imprisoned her brother, and a young Syrian refugee who just misses his mom and dad.

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In Football We Trust

Presented with Longhouse Media as part of Indigenous Showcase.

Feb 01

(Tony Vainuku & Erika Cohn, US/American Samoa, 2015, 82 min, in English)

Shot over four years with unprecedented access, this new take on the American immigrant story transports viewers deep inside the tightly-knit Polynesian community in Salt Lake City, Utah. In Football We Trust is a stirring snapshot of the rise of the Pacific Islander presence in the NFL.

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The Boy Who Lived Before

Director and cast members in attendance!

Feb 02

(Stephen Anunson, US, live action, 2016, 66 min, in English)

Meet Cody, who has memories of a previous life. These memories present themselves in the forms of visions, dreams, and daily routines. In an attempt to understand where he comes from, Cody delves into the online world, eventually attracting the interest of a budding film crew looking for outrageous stories.

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Heidi

Seattle premiere!

Feb 03 - Feb 04

(Alain Gsponer, Germany/Switzerland, live action, 2015, 105 min, in German and Swiss-German with English subtitles)

In this dazzling new film version of the beloved children's book, the adventuresome five-year-old orphan who lives in the Swiss Alps finds her life turned upside down when she must take care of a sick child, Klara. This refreshing rendition of the classic portrays true friendship and devotion.

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Mr. Frog

US premiere!

Feb 04

(Anna van der Heide, The Netherlands, live action, 2016, 99 min, in Dutch with English subtitles)

Sita adores her schoolteacher Mr. Frans, who sometimes changes into a frog. But the animal world is not without danger, and Sita soon finds herself in the position of being his protector.

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Boxing for Freedom

West coast premiere!

Feb 04

(Juan Antonio Moreno and Silvia Venegas, Spain, live action, 2015, 74 min, in Dari with English subtitles)

This documentary tells the story of a Safaf, a teenage girl growing up in wartime and facing intense gender discrimination, who deeply feels it is her destiny to become Afghanistan’s best boxer. Safaf and her sister joined the newly created women's boxing team after being refugees in Iran and returning to their own country.

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Molly Monster

Seattle premiere!

Feb 05

(Ted Sieger, Michael Ekblad & Matthias Bruhn, Germany/Switzerland/Sweden, animated, 2016, 70 min, in English)

Molly Monster is the little only-monster of Popo and Etna Monster. She spends her days in familiar surroundings playing with her best friend Edison, a clockwork toy with a life of his own. But when Mama gives birth to an egg, Molly sets out on a journey to find her new place in the family.

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At Eye Level

US premiere! Presented with Portland German Film Festival / Zeitgeist Northwest.

Feb 11

(Evi Goldbrunner & Joachim Dollhopf, Germany, live action, 2016, 98 min, in German with English subtitles)

Eleven-year-old Michi lives in a children's home, every day fighting to win the respect of the other kids and dreaming of the day he will find his dad. But then he meets Tom – who happens to be a dwarf — and his fantasies turn into complex reality.

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Jeffrey

Seattle premiere!

Feb 11

(Yanillys Perez, Dominican Republic, live action, 2016, 78 min, in Spanish with English subtitles)

Jeffrey, who christens himself “La Pesadilla” (“The Nightmare”) dreams of escaping his street work (cleaning the windshields of cars at red lights) to become a reggaeton singer, following in the footsteps of one of his older brothers.

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CFFS 2017 Closing Ceremony

Feb 11

We close out the 2017 festival by screening films made during the past week in our workshops, announcing the winners of our Children’s Jury Prizes, and celebrating with a surprise selection of outstanding short films made by international filmmakers.

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